191. Gordon Lightfoot

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191. Gordon Lightfoot

Considered an icon in his native Canada, Gordon Lightfoot was a Singer/Songwriter known for his baritone voice and his run of hits. Amongst the Singer/Songwriters who achieved fame in the 70’s, Lightfoot was stripped down even for that genre. At his best when armed with only an acoustic guitar, Lightfoot may have been the best storyteller of his genre, and at the very least he was among the most captivating. As a Canadian who achieved success in the United States, he might have an outside shot to be the next Canuck to get enshrined in Cleveland.

 

Should Gordon Lightfoot be in the Hall of Fame?

Definitely put him in! - 91%
Maybe, but others deserve it first. - 5.1%
Probably not, but it wouldn't be the end of the world. - 1.7%
No opinion. - 0%
No way! - 2.3%

The Bullet Points

  • Eligible Since: Wednesday, 01 January 1997
  • Country of Origin: Orillia, Canada
  • Essential Albums: Sundown (1974)
  • Our Five Favorite Songs as Chosen by Each Member of the NIHOF Committee: The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald (From Summertime Dream, 1976)

Should Gordon Lightfoot be in the Hall of Fame?

Definitely put him in! - 91%
Maybe, but others deserve it first. - 5.1%
Probably not, but it wouldn't be the end of the world. - 1.7%
No opinion. - 0%
No way! - 2.3%

GORDON LIGHTFOOT AT BETHEL WOODS CENTER FOR THE ARTS IN BETHEL, NY

Oct 03, 2019

Buy your Tickets to see Gordon Lightfoot at Bethel Woods Center for the Arts in Bethel, NY HERE for as little as $133!

Gordon Lightfoot

GORDON LIGHTFOOT AT BETHEL WOODS CENTER FOR THE ARTS IN BETHEL, NY

Oct 04, 2019

Buy your Tickets to see Gordon Lightfoot at Bethel Woods Center for the Arts in Bethel, NY HERE for as little as $156!

Gordon Lightfoot

GORDON LIGHTFOOT AT RIDGEFIELD PLAYHOUSE IN RIDGEFIELD, CT

Oct 24, 2019

Buy your Tickets to see Gordon Lightfoot at Ridgefield Playhouse in Ridgefield, CT HERE for as little as $201!

Gordon Lightfoot

GORDON LIGHTFOOT AT SCOTTISH RITE AUDITORIUM IN COLLINGSWOOD, NJ

Nov 01, 2019

Buy your Tickets to see Gordon Lightfoot at Scottish Rite Auditorium in Collingswood, NJ HERE for as little as $78!

Gordon Lightfoot
 
Last modified on Monday, 04 February 2019 21:45
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+1 #8 Darryl Tahirali 2017-09-13 21:53
Quoting Michael tabor 38:
Underrated! Always on my mind & sundown are classics. If he was American he would be in already! Folk is a style of Rock. Joan Baez just got in. While she was influential not really any major hits!

Joan Baez had a Number 3 hit (Billboard US Hot 100) in 1971 with her cover of the Band's "The Night They Drove Dixie Down," and she scraped into the Top 40 in 1975 with her self-penned (and very autobiograph ical) "Diamonds and Rust." (And it still blows my mind that Judas Priest covered it! Well, maybe not so much anymore.)

Gordon Lightfoot was more commercially successful, with four Top 10 hits in the US in the 1970s, and he wrote much more of his own material than did Baez, who was essentially an interpreter and popularizer of folk music at the start of the Rock and Soul Era and the concurrent folk revival. That gives her the edge in influence, as Lightfoot's career began soon after Baez's--and you could argue that Baez's efforts opened the door for first wave from Bob Dylan on down.

But Lightfoot's songwriting puts him into the singer-songw riter camp with the DIY approach that the rock crowd likes. He's always seemed caught between Woody Guthrie and Tin Pan Alley: He writes with intelligence and discernment but also with polished detachment that can lack passion--che ck "Black Day in July," about the 1967 Detroit race riots, for an example. That's probably more true of his topical songs than his personal ones (e.g., "Sundown"), which doesn't mean that I don't think "Boss Man," "Cold Hands from New York," "Marie Christine" (a precursor to "Edmund Fitzgerald") , and especially the epic "Canadian Railroad Trilogy" are fine songs along with the better-known 1970s songs.

By now, I think the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is a mug's game, and I don't get butthurt anymore about who is in and who is out. Donovan and Cat Stevens are already in, and Lightfoot is about at their level of fame, influence, etc., so, yes, put him in. I think at this point it's at least as much a matter of clearing the backlog as anything. Joan Baez went three decades without a nomination, then got in on her first try; Gordon Lightfoot is getting to that stage.
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+2 #7 Michael tabor 38 2017-08-14 23:58
Underrated! Always on my mind & sundown are classics. If he was American he would be in already! Folk is a style of Rock. Joan Baez just got in. While she was influential not really any major hits!
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+3 #6 Mike Johnson 2016-07-30 21:10
There is no doubt Gordon Lightfoot should be in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Granted he may not be a rocker in the true sense of the word but if that was the only deciding factor, a 1/3 of those already elected wouldn't have made it. Case closed indeed.
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+3 #5 jeff ircink 2016-04-22 02:48
ever heard of Leonard Cohen? he was inducted in 2008. and he's not R&R either. so quit using that as a reason.

and i believe Lightfoot has ever major honor Cohen has (both are from Canada) - except R&R HOF honors.

the HOF needs to get its act together. Lightfoot hasn't even been nominated for cryin' out loud.
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+4 #4 Lee Roschen 2015-04-13 00:24
A very prolific singer and songwriter. I have many of his albums, and although he may not qualify as "rock & roll" material, Lightfoot is very worthy for RRHF consideratio n, maybe induction.
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+9 #3 Pattie 2013-06-20 11:02
I saw him at the State Theater in Sandusky, OH, last night (Wed., June 19, 2013)...he is mesmerizing! What a great performer! he needs to be in!!!!At 74 years old, how many of us would get up there & put on such a show?
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0 #2 Smokestoomuch -0001-11-30 00:00
I saw him in concert in 2008. His voice is completely shot. However, as he sang through his hits, I was amazed how many he had. My only objection is that I'm not sure "Easy Listening&qu ot; music qualifies as Rock.
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+10 #1 GreggEsq -0001-11-30 00:00
Bob Dylan is on record saying that Gordon Lightfoot is one of the best singer/songw riters he's ever heard. Case closed.
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